Friday, June 28, 2013

# 452 - Country Life - The Peaceful Pace

FIRST OF ALL...I do NOT have links embedded. Do not click on any links. This seems to be a BlogSpot issue, so don't click on any links in this post.


Starting life on rural acreage in the country is a constant challenge, but it can be rather interesting. For example, the other day, this "what-the-heck" was driving down the road next to us.

I sure do love Texas.


As for moving to the country, the most immediate and important hurdles have been with our utilities. Throughout this year, we will be building a house, but for now, we must go through all the boring motions necessary to get us started with the basics.

For electricity, we started out on generator, but we had a pole installed with a meter and breaker box, then a connection was finally made by the local electrical co-op to our private pole.

For water, we have multiple water hoses connected across acres of land, from one corner of our acreage we have water from the local co-op and it is stranded by water-hoses to the RV. We've had a couple of "blow-outs" of a few water hoses, mostly the ones brought from the house we just moved from. We've definitely learned how important it is to respect high quality water hoses for such projects.

Sgt. Dave also put on a quadruple splitter to allow us to attach multiple water hoses at a junction point. The main LONG hose connection leads to back of RV, then the splitter is used so that we have another hose ready to fill the chicken's or dog's water bowls, to water plants and such, then we have another hose that is attached to the washing machine that is now located in the newly constructed shed.

Water hoses connected and running through forest to RV.

Running pipe to the RV from the main water line is not exactly an option at this point because of the terrain. We are considering the option of finishing the well that was already started on the residential side of our property. Since we are going to be looking into a well, we need all the advice we can get, it is WELCOMED. Give us our good and bad experiences, the do's and the do-not's.

As for septic, we began with a hole in the ground, but now Sgt. Dave has run PVC piping to our septic. I can tell you that going from city plumbing to a hole in the ground was an adventure in itself. To cut down on the aroma, we utilized jugs of bleach. After a septic dump, Sgt. Dave would pour some bleach into the hole and it definitely helped. However, the first time of pouring bleach into the poo-hole resulted in this major chemical bubbling/gas cloud reaction that brought about a lot of laughs as we were shocked. This moment gave us a lesson that bleach and poo porridge can be scientific.

And today we were to have an installation appointment for a phone (land-line) to be installed and to give us DSL Internet! For now, I have often hijacked Lowe's service, which is free to guests and since Lowe's is our second home, I often use it when buying supplies.

At the RV, I have been using my IPhone's "Personal Hotspot" wireless connection, which is quite expensive and limited in data usage. As soon as I exceed my data usage limits, I am charged $10 for every gig of overage. The Personal Hotspot only comes with 5 GB of usage and that goes very fast.

So, I THOUGHT I'd have a home phone and DSL today, but the crew arrived this morning, for the SECOND time, and they realized the line they need to run is more complicated than anticipated. They began burying a lot of line today.

And we're going to have to make a map of some sort to indicate all of the new utility lines we're dealing with lately.

Soon, I'll be able to get back to blogging more regularly.

Oh yes, we burn our trash. Which, I've been told will be a HUGE pain in the rear when the heat sets in and there are burn bans enforced.

We have been through a lot already since we've been out here, but it does feel great to be able to stretch our physical bodies and our minds on this acreage. There is definitely something that comes from nature that is healing to our spirits.

Living in an RV isn't easy, but it isn't so bad, either. It's cozy. I keep reminding myself that not having to clean the near 3,000 square feet of house is really nice! However, I am already yearning for cooler weather.

And a friend and I were communicating today; she lives out here as well. Her family left the same area we just moved from --- in Greater Houston --- and she said they would never go back. She said they love the "slower" pace of the country.

I have decided that instead of calling the country a place that goes at a "slower" pace that I will give my description, which is that it goes by a "peaceful pace."

Of all the utility connections that we've arranged, there has not been one line to stand in to do business. In the Houston area, it is chaos. People don't hardly look up from their keyboard; you walk in and take a number. Here, in the country, you walk in and there are five workers sitting at their desk and you are the only one needing help.

Since we are living here full-time, we finally have the opportunity to make it our mission to try as many of the local restaurants as possible. Each time we get a chance to dine out, we purposefully search for a place we've not yet tried. We will give each restaurant two chances.

We've already ruled out the "nicest" restaurant in town because the main course items are not that tasty, but the prices rival those of Houston's nicer dining establishments with most platters starting at around $17.00 per plate. So, we were disappointed, twice. It's sad when the food is so "off" that you don't even want to take home ample left-overs.

So, we were pleased to find a little Italian hole in the wall.

This week, we tried Joe's Italian Grill, and I was not sure would be good, but it was pretty decent for a small-town in Texas. I was surprised.

By the way, Italian food is my favorite food to cook, so this one is a toughie for restaurants to compete with because home-made Italian can't be beat. Joe's Italian Grill came close...the prices make it worth enjoying.

To start, the salad was tasty and the bread was great.

We then shared a platter that had fettuccine alfredo, lasagna and chicken parmisiana, which was my favorite and will be ordered again.

They are open seven days per week, until 9pm each night and on Saturday until 10pm. A bonus is their daily lunch special is $6.95. Not bad...not bad at all.

Next week, we'll try another new restaurant. There aren't many to try, so we're taking our time.

As for making headway on the acreage, it feels great to see our storage shed in place. Since it will partially serve as the laundry room, I had to make an effort to reduce the amount of dirt being tracked inside. Our acreage has great soil, but the top-coating is mostly sand and this can be maddening. You know about sand.

Years ago, we laid out several pallets of St. Augustine grass, which is starting to spread out further and further now that we are living here and keeping the lawn mowed to reduce blackberry vines. It can't spread fast enough for me.

We know that a little deck in front of the RV would be helpful; it would give us stomping ground to better shake off the dirt and to reduce the amount of sand/dirt that is tracked in the RV by us and the dogs. Using what I have available, I laid some old bricks at the RV and storage building entrance.

These are very old bricks from my mom's house
that were dug up and left in a pile for years.
My grandfather was a plumber; I think these are
sewer bricks.

Every effort is part of the LONG, tedious process of moving to the country.

My father-in-law taking a well-deserved break.

No matter where you live, we all know that this world can give us combined yukiness along with beauty, but I do love living in the re-charges my soul.

1 comment:

Tombstone Livestock said...

I hope you got the poo situation under control. Hydrated Lime would not only cut the smell but keep bugs away. But you have a lot of water there so don't know how well it would work. Think I would have used a 55 gallon plastic barrel and built an outhouse.